Posted by: Debra Kolkka | October 6, 2012

A trip to Todi

The guide book on Umbria said that the Piazza del Popolo in Todi is considered one of the most beautiful squares in Italy. It seemed to be a perfectly good reason to visit this hilltop town.

Not knowing the layout of the town, we parked at the bottom the hill and searched for a way to the top on foot. The very considerate people of Todi have provided a couple of ways of heading up to the town centre. There is a pretty walking path.


But, even better, there is a tiny funicular to whisk you to the top…for free.


Much better than trudging all the way up. It is a steep hill.


The views from the beautiful park at the top are spectacular. The gorgeous Umbrian landscape rolls out for miles in all directions.




Todi has cute, narrow, winding streets like many of Italy’s ancient towns, making it fun to explore.


Originally Etruscan, then Roman, it became an independent city state in the middle ages when most of the important buildings were built. We set off to find Piazzo del Popolo.


The Duomo (above) dates from the 12th century. I loved the beautiful carved wooden doors.





At the other end of the square are the Palazzo dei Priori with its 14th century tower, Palazzo del Popolo and the Palazzo del Capitano, distinguished by a broad staircase.


Nearby Piazza Garibaldi offers magnificent views over the late summer countryside.




According to legend an eagle indicated the hill that Todi was to be built on, and the eagle became its coat of arms. Eagles are well represented in the town, impressively so in a huge fountain we came upon.



The streets of Todi offer the usual delights, especially in the tiny back streets off the main piazzas.





The church of San Fortunato was begun in the 13th century, and the Gothic facade was completed in the 15th century.



The doorway is particularly lovely with its delicately carved colonnettes.




The interior is stunning as well. There are many old frescoes, some attributed to Giotto.









We didn’t eat in Todi, but we did spot this cute restaurant at the entrance to town that might need further investigation.



Soon it was time to head back down the hill and on to the next hilltop Italian town…….all in the name of research, of course.



  1. Reblogged this on dagnijas and commented:
    lielisks fotostāsts par mazu pilsētiņu Itālijā. tieši ts, ko vajag rudens vakarā.

  2. Great photos as usual Deb! We loved our short stop in Todi. There was a antique/flea market in the square and a lovely bride walking up the stairs to the Palazzo to her groom. Would have been nice to know about the funicular!! That was a steep hill!

    • It was tucked away in a corner…..but we found it!

  3. J’adore Todi Debra….and we used that funicular too. Umbria is one of the best parts of Italy I think…have you been to gorgeous Gubbio? Oh the sun looks sooooooo wonderful there….rain, rain, rain and greyness here in Paris!

    • Gubbio is a gorgeous town…we loved it too.

  4. Lovely photos again, Debra. Todi looks like a wonderful place to visit.

    • We were only there a few hours and it was siesta time, so it was not very busy, but it looks like a pretty little town.

  5. What a beautiful place! And so steep! I hope you wore your flat walking shoes, Deb! 🙂

    • I always wear flat walking shoes.

  6. I love Umbria, though I’ve never been to Todi. Thank you for a wonderful tour! I went to school in Perugia for a while; those steep narrow streets remind me of Perugia. Umbria has a different look and feel from Tuscany, I think – the plains had a blue cast instead of such a saturated green.

    • I really can’t see much difference between Tuscany and Umbria…they are both lovely.

  7. Umbria has so many wonderful towns! I love the altar of St Anthony in blue. Great photos Debra!

    • Italy is full of beautiful towns, you couldn’t see them all in a lifetime.

  8. We stayed in the heart of Todi at least 10 years ago and did not even know it had a funicular! Maybe it has been built since then.
    We drove straight up, we were in a hotel right in the main piazza.
    Thanks for the memories. Roz

    • We probably could have driven, but sometimes you can get stuck in narrow streets.

  9. Not sure why Anonymous appeared, maybe the avatar I created some time ago is not working. Roz

  10. Think I must now put Todi Umbria on my next ‘must do’ list for Italy. You find such interesting less known places as well as all the very famous places.Weather looked to be good -that helps.

    • Todi is well known I think, but it was a first for me.

  11. Beautiful photos!

  12. Sigh, now I’m just jealous. So lovely.

    • Todi is well worth a visit.

  13. Not only great photos, but wow … what a great find … You went expecting to find a few gems .. but they were bountiful!

    • It is great fun to set out to find new places to visit.

  14. Umbria has such beautiful landscapes and you have captured this one beautifully. Todi looks like a lovely little town and very steep! That seems to be typical in Umbria, right?

    • There must be thousands of hilltop towns in Italy, each with its own delights.

  15. You’re making me homesick Debra! But in the nicest way…The last time I was in Todi with Marabella San Fortunato was closed. I have some photos of her looking ruefully at the big green doors…. The interior looks magnificent. Thanks for a beautiful post!

    • It was a very interesting church, quite different from others.

  16. Todi is so beautiful. I remember having lunch at a gorgeous little restaurant just off the square which had an open grill and stunning views of the valley. Did you find the gorgeous little linen shop in the square?

    • I did find that little shop…I bought something there.

  17. Look like a beautiful place and all that walking must be great for fitness level although I confess I might be tempted to take the funicular if I ever lucky enough to visit Todi. Enjoy the further research!

    • I am happy to walk all day….but not uphill.

  18. Oh, what a charming place! Hope you’ve had a lovely weekend, my friend.

    • I had a wonderful weekend in lovely Italy…thank you.

  19. Thank you so much Debra for your visit to my show at Aldobrandesca Fortress, on Mount Amiata! It was really a pleasure to welcome you at the castle. I’m so grateful! Have a nice day! And many thanks to Eileen!

    • I was a delight to meet you Roberto. We loved your exhibition and our time in Piancastagnaio.

  20. Another fabulous post of another gorgeous Italian town. I just love it, I want to go there and I love the photos. Lyn

    • There are simply too many wonderful places to see in Italy.

  21. Wow, looks amazing… x

  22. There’s an Italian immersion school in Todi that I’ve had on my “I have to do that” list for a while but I’ve never seen or known much about Todi. Now it’s even more of a must do because, wow, the town looks great! Thanks for the peek at it.

    • Todi is a lovely little town and so close to other gorgeous places….like Orvieto.

  23. Oh Debra, I am so there! My sister and I had to choose between Norcia and Todi on our last trip to Italy and we chose Norcia, but I will definitely make the effort to see Todi next trip… Here’s my 2010 Norcia post:
    Ciao for now, Maria Luisa

    • Norcia looks great too…..there is too much to see in lovely Italy.

  24. Love LOVE the details as always. Your expertise! Love the many arches – indeed, very Italian. And the landscapes … so awesome to stare at.
    The wooden craved sculptures are the best. Really cool knowing I don’t see much of it now.

  25. For me Todi will always be remembered as the town of the great Jacopone da Todi whose bones rest in the church of San Fortunato there – see my blog on him at

    • Todi is a pretty hilltop town, worth a visit.

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